Why foster?

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There are approximately 60,000 children and young people who are in the care of Local Authorities at any one time. The total number of children and young people who are looked after by the state in any year rises to approximately 300,000, and the numbers seem to be increasing each year.

Statistics suggest that around two thirds of children and young people who need looking after are placed in foster homes, with the majority of the other third living with families and friends or in residential provision.

More foster carers are needed

There is a national shortage of foster carers in for children who are deemed ‘hard to place’.  ‘Hard to place’, according to statistics, means teenagers, disabled children, black and minority ethnic children and sibling groups. More foster cares are needed to ensure that all children and young people who need foster homes have an opportunity to benefit from living within a stable, safe and nurturing family environment. You don’t need to have any particular academic or vocational qualifications, but having experience of caring for or working with children or young people really helps.

We believe that taking care of children and young people who cannot live with their own families is a very special job. Making a positive difference in the life of a child or young person is wonderful and very rewarding, but it can also be very challenging and demanding.

Professional support services

Foster carers need to work in partnership with a range of people who are involved in the child or young person’s life, this often includes; the birth parents, extended family members, Social Workers, health workers, staff within education and a range of other professionals.

Fostering is a huge commitment. It will have an impact on you and your whole family. Therefore, it is vitally important to find out as much as you can and take time to discuss the possibility with all of your family so that you can make the right choice at the right time for the right reason.

Some key requirements of becoming a foster carer are:

  • You need to like children and young people
  • You need to have at least one spare room
  • You need to have lots of patience
  • You need to be able to be very flexible in terms of time availability
  • You need to enjoy working as part of a team
  • You need to be willing to learn
  • You need to have family and friends who will support you